Unit 1 powerpoint #7 (the gilded age the rise of unions)
The Birth of Unions By Brad Harris,SE: US 3B Grand Prairie HS
What is a Labor Union?A labor union is an organization of workers who unite to protect the rights of the workers from abusive practices of the employer
What is a Labor Strike? A labor strike is when a labor union refuses to go to work in order to shut down a businessbecause of poor working conditions or poor pay
Early UnionsThe free enterprise system meant that businesses made their own rules Without government interference, businessowners could pay their workers what they wanted and make them work as long as they wanted Industrialization during the late 1800scontributed to the development of organized labor because it created low-wage, low-skill jobs that made employees easy to replace.
Suppressing the Unions• Union organizers were blacklisted, making it impossible for them to get a job• Businesses locked workers out and refused to pay them• Workers were forced to sign contracts saying they would not join a union
Karl Marx Karl Marx was the German philosopher, whose ideas are credited as the foundation of modern communism.Marx argued that free market capitalism, like previous socio-economic systems, will inevitably produce internal tensions which will lead to its destruction
MarxismMarx believed that workers would eventually revolt,take control of factories, and overthrow thegovernment. Once the workers did this, the newworkers-led government would take all private propertyand distribute wealth evenly among every citizen.Marxism greatly influenced European unions and ledto numerous revolutions in Europe in the mid-1800s.When immigrants came to the U.S. from Europe, manyfeared they would bring their ideas of workersrevolutions with them, leading to a distrust of manyAmericans of immigrant workers.
Mary Harris “Mother” Jones Mother Jones was the nation’s mostprominent woman union leader during the American Industrial Revolution Jones became an organizer for the United Mine Workers She traveled to numerous mining camps to see conditions miners had to endure. She gave fiery speeches for miners to unite to fight for better working conditions and better pay.
Eugene V. DebsEugene V. Debswas the powerful leader of the AmericanRailway Union. Debs would run for president four times as a candidate for the Socialist Party
American Federation of Labor The American Federation of Labor was the union of over 20 trade unions Samuel Gompers was the union’s first leader.Gompers believed unions should stay out of politics and that they should negotiate rather than go on strike.
Great Railroad Strike of 1877In 1877, an economic recession led to some railroads cutting wages, triggering the first nationwide laborstrike. It became known as the Great Railroad Strike.
Great Railroad Strike of 1877Some workers turned violent and numerous states had to call out their state militias to stop the violence.
Knights of Labor In response to the GreatRailroad Strike of 1877, labor organizers formed the firstnationwide industrial union – the Knights of Labor. The Knights called for an eight-hour workday, supported the use of arbitration AND began to organize strikes.
Haymarket Riot The Haymarket Riot was the disturbance that tookplace on May 4, 1886, in Chicago, and began as a rally in support of striking workers.
Haymarket Riot A bomb was thrown during the rally, which started ariot. Eight men were convicted and four of them wereexecuted. One was a member of the Knights of Labor.
Homestead StrikeThe Homestead Strike occurred in 1892 when workers of Andrew Carnegie’s U.S. Steel went on strike after a tense labor dispute led to a lockout.
Homestead StrikeThe Homestead Strike one of the most violent strikes in U.S. history and was a major setback for unions.
Pullman Strike The Pullman Strike refers to a nationwide conflict between labor unions and railroads that occurred near Chicago in 1894.
Pullman Strike Following the firing of union workers, Debs organized a strike that shut down the nation’s railroads and threatened the economy.
Impact of union strikesUnion membership declined as many people saw unions as being Un-American and violent
IWW (Wobblies) The International Workers of the World (IWW) is the union created in Chicago in 1905that was made up primarily of socialists and anarchists The IWW called for all workers to be united as a class and no wage system
Women’s Trade Union LeagueIn the early 1900s, women were paid less than men, and most unions did not include women. As a result, in 1903 the Women’s Trade Union League was formed This was the first union organized to address women’s labor issues.
Summary• The free enterprise system is based on the laissez-faire theory, meaning that the government should not interfere with or regulate business• Industrialization contributed to the development of labor unions because it created low-wage, low-skill jobs that made employees easy to replace• The Great Railroad Strike of 1877 led to the first nationwide industrial union – the Knights of Labor• Samuel Gompers formed the American Federation of Labor, the largest trade union in the nation
Coming up Next…Politics and Reform during theGilded Age